The Heron’s Cry & Blood at the Root

Sitting home recovering from my booster shot of Moderna, I finished The Heron’s Cry by Ann Cleeves. I am really liking this new series of hers almost as much as her Vera Stanhope series. Matthew Venn is obviously a very different protagonist, from Vera. A man who grew up in a rigid sect, The Bretheren, broke away from them and joined the police force.

Matthew is called to a bloody scene of the murder of a seemingly well liked doctor. As he and his team investigate, tenuous connections seem to exist between the current murder and some older suicides. The victim’s daughter, Eve, is dragged into the investigation as she found her father’s body. Eve’s relationship with Matthew’s husband, Jonathon adds some tension as Matthew is someone who values the rules and order and compartmentalizing. There is a significant subplot about Matthew’s relationship woven into the story. There is also a glimpse into the minds and lives of the other team members, particularly Ross.

The clues continue to point off in various directions and it seems like everyone has secrets to hide. Some really great twists and turns towards the end here. Strong themes of suicide and suicidal ideation. Highly recommended

Blood at the Root is book 9 in the Inspector Banks series. This outing in the series definitely poses the question, what happens when the victim is someone who would be difficult to feel sorry for under any circumstances? A young man is found stomped to death and Banks begins his investigation. Upon finding his identity, they uncover a rather sordid association with Neo Nazis. The further the investigation drags on the more of a political minefield it becomes, with Neo Nazis on one side and members of the local community on the other. Great read in an excellent series.